Dennis Burnett

My story in photography starts with BMX. A series of events both fortunate and unfortunate eventually landed me my first DSLR in the summer of 2015, where I spent the my first chapter filming and editing short BMX videos for myself and repset.net. I wasn’t at all interested in photos but I knew that learning some aspects of photography would improve the quality of my video. When winter came along, I spent more time taking photos and really enjoyed how much quicker the whole process was finished, and it wasn’t long before I quit filming altogether.

BMX photography is more than just snapping a trick of a hooligan destroying himself and the property around him. A good BMX photo tells a story; it needs a beginning, a climax and an ending. The timing of the trick can be the hardest and most crucial part, but knowing where the rider started from and ended, is what showcases the true difficulty and individuality of the trick.
BMX and photography share a lot of parallels: both are expressive and neither are truly competitive, unless you want them to me. Back when I rode BMX, I didn’t want to do the same tricks as anyone else, and now I don’t want to take the same photos as anyone else. I’m not interested in taking a photo of a trick at a spot that’s happened before. I don’t want to take a photo of the same building from the same vantage point that I’ve seen before. If I happen to shoot a popular subject, I strive to do it in a way I haven’t seen before. I’ll aim to shoot at an irregular time of day, from a different vantage point, or a different focal length than others use. I want my pictures to be unique. I don’t want to collect photos I like, I want to create frames that don’t exist, whether it’s BMX or otherwise.

I’ve gone through all kids of phases from long exposure steel wool shots, to portraits, to pets and I’ve even shot a few weddings. However, the one genre that has really spoken to me is Street. Street photography has been a go-to for me and more people refer to me as a street photographer than anything else. ‘People doing things’ happens all the time, but every time anyone does anything, it’s unique, and I like that. Much like BMX, moments happen in the blink of an eye, and if you’re not one step ahead, you’ll miss it. You can shoot for all kinds of things in street like composition, contrast, colours etc, but the moments I love most are the ones that make you think, not only about the frame, but yourself. What does your interpretation of a moment say about you? When you see two people hugging in an alley before sunrise in the freezing cold, what goes through your mind? And what type of person does that make you?

My goal is to always show people something new. No matter what I'm shooting, I like to do it in a way that hasn't been done before. What you can find at this show is a lot of views of Winnipeg like you haven't seen them before. Whether it's a bmx photo, a cityscape, or some of the great personalities within our city, you will see a fresh perspective and walk away with new appreciation for Winnipeg.

Venue - Floodway Print Co.
Venue Hours - Mon-Fri 9am-4pm

Artist Instagram @menace204